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 Monday, August 15, 2005

SPORTS

 C-3 


 

Gabelsville jumps up 2-0 on Fleetwings

But a 6-5 win in Game 2 of the championship series doesn't clinch it.




Of The Morning Call


 

Even after his team held off the Fleetwings for a 6-5 win Sunday night in Scherersville to take a 2-0 stranglehold in the best-of-five Tri-County League championship series, Gabelsville manager Mike ''Doc'' Moyer wasn't relaxed.

''Heck no, we know they're not going to go away,'' Moyer said. ''I feel very fortunate we're up 2-0 and know that we're going to have to keep battling. We've played them five times this season, and we've had four one-run games and one two-run game and they won the two-run game.''

Gabelsville's second one-run victory in as many nights came down to the ability to capitalize on opportunities.

The Owls (31-8) pounced on a Fleetwings' error in the first inning to score three times and scored three more runs off another miscue in the seventh.

Gabelsville needed every tally to withstand two long, solo home runs by Matt Godusky and Scott Matejicka in the second inning and a three-run blast by Tommy Williams in the seventh.

But other than the three longballs, the Fleetwings had just four hits and had 12 consecutive batters retired in one effective stretch by Owls' starter Todd Stapleton, a Boyertown High and Alvernia College product.

''We knew that we'd have to hit to win this weekend and we haven't done it,'' Fleetwings' player-manager Jeremy Arner said. ''Hitting is our strength, but we gave [Stapleton] a lot of easy of innings.''

After striking out two of the three batters he faced in the sixth, the tiring Stapleton began the seventh by hitting Matejicka and walking Arner.

Moyer pulled Stapleton at that point and brought in veteran Shawn Betz.

''[Stapleton] was getting a little tired and if we had been up by only one run, Betz would have started the inning,'' Moyer said. ''I wanted to give him the chance to finish it.''

But Betz's first pitch was sent way over the fence in left-center by Williams to make it a one-run game.

Betz got the next two hitters before Matt Marcks dinked a single to shallow center to extend the suspense. No. 3 hitter Justin Godusky hit the ball hard, but right at shortstop Jon Kaletja, who flipped to second baseman Mitch Schueck for the final out.

''I was just glad we got some baserunners and made some things happen to get some breathing room in the top of the seventh,'' Moyer said. ''It got a little closer than I would have liked. It shouldn't have been that interesting, but we still won.''

Gabelsville got its six runs off just five hits. In addition to the two costly errors that paved the way for four unearned runs, the Owls benefitted from three hit batters, three walks and a wild pitch.

Lead-off hitter A.J. Bohn reached base three times, twice after getting plunked by pitches and he also singled in a run in the seventh.

''All of their guys put the ball in play and don't strike out,'' Arner said. ''They find a way to get on base. They force you to make plays, and defensively, we haven't made all of the plays so far in this series.''

But the 30-13 Fleetwings, who have won four elimination games so far in this postseason, feel they're capable of a three-win streak. They will send Brian Frazier, an Emmaus grad coming off a successful freshman year at George Washington, to the mound at 5:45 p.m. Tuesday when the series resumes at Gabelsville.


Gabelsville    300 000 3 6 5 0

Fleetwings    020 000 3 5 7 2


Stapleton, Betz (7) and B. Kropp; Hlay, Hemberger (6), Bolasky (7) and Arner. W: Stapleton. L: Hlay. HRs: Fleetwings, M. Godusky (2nd, none on), Matejicka (2nd, none on), Williams (7th, 2 on).



keith.groller@mcall.com

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From The Morning Call -- August 15, 2005

Copyright 2005, The Morning Call